On a cold and breezy June day that felt more like it belonged in March, we pedaled our way up Ash Canyon with no particular trail plan in mind. The leader would just make a decision at the next intersection as to which way we would go. Sometimes it’s better that way, so you’re not thinking about the whole climb from the very bottom.
We ended up on the Evidence Trail, and I could see Scott R and Ryan up the trail near the entrance of the log skinny. Luckily I was close enough to witness what came next. Scott R decided it was time to ride the log skinny for the first time. He got up on the log, rode half way across, and then flew off the left side! Now Scott has always told me how hard it is to wheelie his Stumpjumper 29er, and I’ve tried and agree with him, but he wheelie dropped off the log perfectly, and stuck the landing!
The impact blew out his front tire, which was setup tubeless, and the white sealant oozed from the wound. The bead on the rear tire came unseated too, but this was not discovered until down the trail a ways. He had a tube in the rear, and it was easily popped back in. Thankfully both wheels were still true, and Scott was having a good laugh about the whole thing.
While Scott repaired his front tire, Ryan and I took turns practicing the log skinny. I did a foot dab at top of the ramp on the first run, but then had a clean second run. Ryan rode the log skinny on the first attempt, but was definitely in the red zone near where Scott fell off. We were both a little psyched out after seeing Scott’s leap. While Scott pumped and pumped up his tire, I also had time to check out the new log skinny bottle opener.
After riding the log a few times, I’m finally starting to learn the technique. I found the trick for me is to take the entrance turn wide, and line up the bike with the log before getting onto the ramp. When I have problems, I think I’m still trying to finish the turn as I go up the ramp.